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Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do? (Read 12612 times)

Offline bernadette60614

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Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
« on: December 29, 2014, 06:52:04 PM »
Our son and I have been taking piano lessons with the same teacher for the last six months.  His teacher is a lovely person and he really likes her, enjoys going to the lessons and enjoys demonstrating to us what he has taught himself to play by ear.

But, he hates to practice.  He's asked to practice only 10 minutes a day (a far cry from the two hours a day I was required to practice at his age) and it is a struggle. We've tried rewards (extra Youtube viewing time, cash, a special excrusion) and others to no avail.

I finally told him that if he wanted to quit he had to go in and personally tell his teacher.

He's turning 13 this month and I suspect some of this is just being a new teen.  Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!

Online brogers70

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #1 on: December 29, 2014, 07:43:03 PM »
Everything depends on the child, so my experience may be irrelevant. My daughter took piano lessons for a while, but did not like to practice regularly. Eventually, I just let her stop. Years later, when she was in college and was singing a good deal, I asked her if she regretted our not having forced her to stick with it. She said not at all, and that we had no idea how many of her Korean friends hated music after the hours they spent in tears with their parents forcing them to practice the piano.

Offline hardy_practice

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #2 on: December 29, 2014, 08:02:57 PM »
10 minutes and you've a problem!? He's spoiled.
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Offline awesom_o

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #3 on: December 29, 2014, 08:35:25 PM »


I finally told him that if he wanted to quit he had to go in and personally tell his teacher.


That's a good plan! It sounds as if he takes his lessons for granted, and that's not a good thing. If he isn't prepared to face his teacher and tell her the truth, he isn't prepared to quit!

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #4 on: December 29, 2014, 08:38:39 PM »
Rewards do not work and actually makes students less likely to practice.  This has been known for more than 50 years. But, no one reads these things.  It's important to focus on the reasons for practice.  Further, time goals actually make students less likely to practice because that's not what matters, but learning.  If you focus on learning, students will practice until they feel they've accomplished something.  This is its own reward.

Offline Petter

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #5 on: December 29, 2014, 09:23:33 PM »
Is it a joint lesson?
"A gentleman is someone who knows how to play an accordion, but doesn't." - Al Cohn

Offline cwjalex

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #6 on: December 29, 2014, 09:27:09 PM »
it's a struggle to get him to practice 10 minutes a day?!  if he hates the piano that much i personally don't think you should force your child to play.  it's too bad you already told him he could quit.  i may have done something like...pick a piece that he loves that is a little bit above his ability and say that once he has learned the piece if he still hates piano then he can quit.  if after the accomplishment he still hates the piano then you know that he really does hate it.  i think once most people have worked to play a piece that they initially couldn't, that it provides a strong incentive to keep playing.  

Offline bronnestam

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #7 on: December 29, 2014, 09:33:34 PM »

But, he hates to practice.  He's asked to practice only 10 minutes a day (a far cry from the two hours a day I was required to practice at his age)

...

He's turning 13 this month and I suspect some of this is just being a new teen.
...

Jeezuz ... Demanding a 13-year old to practice 2 hours a day??????
THAT is insanity.

I'd say, 10 minutes a day is fine. Three years ago, when I decided to start all over again with my piano playing, I also decided to do 10 minutes a day, just to get going. If I had given myself a harder goal, I know I would never have overcome this first period. I also was very careful to praise myself (praise = my way of rewarding myself) for everything I did that was more than zero.

I did not have to push myself to increase my practice time. Over the months, I played more and more because it was FUN. And that has been my philosophy since then: it should be fun. If it is not, then I don't play. If I don't feel like practicing one day, I simply don't. I work with no pressure on myself, and the result is that I'm learning faster and faster and I play better and better.

Unless your son's life does not depend on it, I wonder why you should force him to play 2 hours a day. He is 13 and he should have lots of things to do in his life. The teen years were difficult even during my time - I was born 1966, you do the math - and I believe it is even harder now.

If I were you, I would talk to him and say that if he agrees to practice 10 minutes a day (minimum), with no exceptions, you will not ask for more. The rest is up to him.

Then you let him handle this by himself. You should encourage him, not push him. He is 13. Neither you nor anyone else knows what his adult career will look like, it is far too early. Let him find his own way, and try to accept his choices as long as they don't directly harm him. If you start to push him and force him to play, you will kill all his joy for piano playing, making it yet another tedious duty he has to do in order to please someone else. And if so, what's the point with it?

If piano playing really is something for him, he will find his way back to it when he is ready for it.

And if all this is just a teen revolution, you will make the fight pointless by not offering him resistance. Meanwhile you keep on working with your own piano playing and YOU have fun.

Offline rachmforever

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #8 on: December 29, 2014, 10:05:56 PM »
When I was 13 I practiced about 30 minutes per day and it was maximally! I really hated it. But my mother coerced practice me and now I am grateful to her for that because I'm study at conservatory and it's the best what could happen to me. Question is If your son have talent...
Chopin etudes op.10 No 1,3,12 op.25 No 12
Schumann and Grieg piano concertos A minor
Beethoven sonatas No.17, No.14
Rachmaninoff prelude B minor
and more...
learning:

Offline outin

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #9 on: December 30, 2014, 04:58:07 AM »
Have you tried introducing different kinds of music, trying to find something that he actually wants to learn? If there's no inner motivation, what's the point really?

Offline amytsuda

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #10 on: December 30, 2014, 05:27:27 AM »
Does he like music? Then, is he interested in trying other instruments or maybe composition? Since he can play from ear, he may be interested in other ways than piano. My niece never showed any interest in piano despite her auntie encouraging her, but when she started her middle school, she suddenly picked up a clarinet and joined a school band. Now she is really into her clarinet. A kid of my friends is into making music on Garage Band. My husband is classically trained tenor and can't play piano, except he loves banging jazz chords and sing on top of it for fun, which entertains guests more than any of my classic piano playing (it's funny, he still can't play Chopin Prelude Op 28 No 4, but he plays chords by ear fantastically...).

Offline pianoplunker

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #11 on: December 30, 2014, 06:29:10 AM »
Our son and I have been taking piano lessons with the same teacher for the last six months.  His teacher is a lovely person and he really likes her, enjoys going to the lessons and enjoys demonstrating to us what he has taught himself to play by ear.

But, he hates to practice.  He's asked to practice only 10 minutes a day (a far cry from the two hours a day I was required to practice at his age) and it is a struggle. We've tried rewards (extra Youtube viewing time, cash, a special excrusion) and others to no avail.

I finally told him that if he wanted to quit he had to go in and personally tell his teacher.

He's turning 13 this month and I suspect some of this is just being a new teen.  Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!

No need to practice if he can just pick up by ear. Having him explain to his teacher why he is not interested in practicing at this time is absolutely something he can learn from. He should organize and write the reasons as well. Professional and mature. Later he can tell pianostreet how he quit piano at 13 and wants to start again after x decades. Just like some of us already do !

Offline diomedes

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #12 on: December 30, 2014, 04:00:11 PM »
Clearly you are a parent that cares, otherwise you wouldn't be here. As mentioned above learning is the reward, and I always found students that feel they are moving forward are in fact motivated.

I've never given these things thought, but maybe tell the teacher that your child plans on telling him this beforehand so they may prepare a calculated reaction.

Incentives for practice. My first intuition, less than a second of thought is that is bad. Don't do it.

Quote
Professional and mature.

Asking someone to become more mature on the spot is unlikely. Experiences are necessary, sadly.
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Offline abel2

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #13 on: December 30, 2014, 06:59:35 PM »
As an advanced student who lives to play the piano, I can confidently say that you will be pulling teeth with him until he is ready. My parents started me in first grade, and I've only just come around the last three-four years. You can get better results with bribery, punishment, etc. but the only truly successful solution is for him to enjoy it. If he doesn't learn to enjoy the piano, and practicing it, he will give it up at the first opportunity. I suggest that the teacher find music, or a musical style he enjoys, and find pieces that are at his level, and regarding and enjoyable to play. A reward system helps too. Ultimately, you just need to get him to enjoy it. It's the only way...

Offline bernadette60614

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #14 on: December 31, 2014, 06:21:41 PM »
I should clarify:  I don't require him to practice two hours a day.  That was what I was required to do at his age.

I"m thinking what is happening here is that he previously played by ear, and he's not being asked to read music...which he really don't enjoy doing (nor would I if I could play by ear!)

His teacher sent us a lovely holiday note saying how much she enjoys working with us (we take individual lessons at the same studio) and since he loves her so much (she's like a Mary Englebrecht drawing), I think that might be an inducement.

I've just decided not to push it.  We'll keep taking lessons, go out for ice cream afterwards, and perhaps his interest will rekindle.

Thanks, everyone!

Offline Bob

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #15 on: December 31, 2014, 08:54:55 PM »
Let him stop if he doesn't want to.

Find music he wants to practice.  He'll practice that.


One "trick" I think my parents did when I was young was to have household chores to do... unless I was going to practice to work on homework, in which case I could do that and not do the chores.
Favorite new teacher quote -- "You found the only possible wrong answer."

Offline iansinclair

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #16 on: January 01, 2015, 01:51:13 AM »
For what it's worth...

My parents gave me piano lessons when I was young.  I quit when I entered 8th grade, though I did take up French horn at that point because I wanted to be in the band (social thing, and a French horn was what they needed).  That went through high school (and I did rather well at it, if I do say so myself).  When I went to college, I became intrigued with classical organ -- I don't know why -- and in sophomore year started taking lessons very seriously.  And wound up graduating just short of a music major (organ, choral conducting and history).  Made a living of sorts for the next 45 years as a Minister of Music.

So -- you just can't tell.  If your son is interested in music, he will come back to it, or it will come back to him.  And the lessons will not have been wasted!
Ian

Offline slane

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #17 on: January 01, 2015, 08:43:39 AM »
Well as lots of others have pointed out, the motivation needs to be intrinsic. Extrinsic rewards don't help.
One thing my daughter, 11, hates is that working through the method books means that if she hits a piece she doesn't relate to, the next few weeks are miserable. I've promised her that when she gets a little better she can pick her own music, and to that end, I've made a playlist of AMEB preliminary music that, in a few months, she should be able to play quite easily. She listens to that in the car. In effect we've created a big bucket of possible pieces for her to play, analogous to the way you choose a book at the library.

Perhaps there's something in this "Teen teaching toolkit" that will help you...
http://timtopham.com/teen-teaching-toolkit-free-ebook-download/

I just posed your question to ny 11 year old. She wants to point out that she used to find 10 minutes a day very tiring. Now she does 20mins after slowly working up to it. And also, she does a lot of different things in her practice. She's halfway through the Hal Leonard 3rd piano lessons book, she's doing the dozen a day book 2 and starting "getting to preliminary" which means she doesn't get bogged down in playing one thing over and over and quickly gets a sense of accomplishment from the dozen a day.

Offline falala

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #18 on: January 06, 2015, 12:09:16 AM »
I disagree with the thing people keep saying about rewards not working. Anyone who's ever been a parent knows that rewards can work very well for many kinds of things. They can work for practice, when it's just a question of keeping it ticking over in between periods of inspiration (which is most of the battle).

I don't know how much "making it fun" can help. It's funny - I'm a piano teacher, and I play jazz and pop as well as classical music and have always taught pop styles, improvising, reading chords etc. as well as more traditional skills. A lot of kids have come to me because they didn't get on with their previous teacher's approach.

But the more I do it, the more I come round to thinking that practice is work, and you just have to be willing to put that work in. A kid might not want to learn a particular way, or a particular kind of repertoire, because it isn't fun and their own thing musically. But if they don't understand the idea of sitting down and doing a bit of work to achieve an end result, they'll STILL be unwilling to practise even when you tailor everything exactly to what they want and like. I'm not saying don't be fun and creative - it's important to, and I always make an effort to myself. It's just that it can be a red herring. It's important to distinguish between not liking the specific content, and not liking the idea of working at ANY content. When it's the latter problem, turning somersaults to please the student won't actually help.

In this respect, the fact that it's "only" 10 minutes a day, and seems so unreasonable of him to object to, strikes a chord with me. In my experience once you start whittling down from the kind of practice actually required to make any difference and compromising in order to reach a point the child will be OK with, it can become counterproductive. A child who's not prepared (for whatever set of reasons) to just make sitting at the piano and doing the work part of their daily routine, will be just as unprepared to do that for 10 minutes as for half an hour.

I wonder if, in your case, it's all just a bit too late. If you mean that your son first took up the instrument 6 months ago, then that's getting on perilously close to the puberty and girls stage to be taking on a new study and having to go through the slog of the first stages. It's one thing to have a moderate practice discipline instilled from early childhood, reach a decent level by that stage and be prepared to practice because you can already enjoy playing, and want to play better. It's another thing to be starting out.

I would say that at his age, it's got to suit him and his life and what he might use the instrument for. So maybe a band instrument or guitar or something might be good. But in the meantime keeping going with the lessons, learning the basics of music, even with minimal practice, won't do him any harm.

Offline jpahmad

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #19 on: January 12, 2015, 12:57:37 AM »






Offline mike71

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #20 on: January 22, 2015, 10:18:51 AM »
Does he like music? Then, is he interested in trying other instruments or maybe composition? Since he can play from ear, he may be interested in other ways than piano.
This.
Maybe he finds, say, electric guitar or saxophone way cooler than the piano.
Forcing too much a child to play the piano or making other activities it's a sure way to make him or her drop the activity as soon as possible. 

Offline newkidintown

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #21 on: January 22, 2015, 04:03:48 PM »
It's really hard to say in situations like these... I mean, I started piano just because my mom wanted me to. I hated it, went through three teachers in as many years, and was so awful that my teacher would walk me up and down the hall of lesson rooms, saying things like, "look at how good he is, that's what happens when you practise" and "look how far along she is, I'll bet she doesn't refuse to play when her teacher asks". I didn't even learn chords until three or four years into taking lessons.

About year six, I learned that I could teach myself songs, and year seven or eight I quit lessons, took a few years to work on non-classical music, and started loving the instrument. I went from having to use an egg timer and parents' discipline to get twenty minutes of practise done to voluntarily practising until my parents got sick of hearing me. I even got a keyboard so I could practise with headphones when my parents told me to stop. Now I've been playing 12 years. I play keyboard in a band, piano in an orchestra, and I'm teaching myself grade 9 and 10 pieces successfully enough to do well in auditions and get compliments from piano teachers at my school walking past the practise room I'm playing in.

If I had quit when I wanted to, I would be missing a large part of my life. But at the time, I was miserable. Looking back, I think that a change in genre, more of a challenge in being taught, and my teachers letting me take a break from a song I was struggling on to try something simpler would have been a huge help. Also, try to stay respectful of the student: more often than not, they aren't ungrateful for their lessons, they're just frustrated and not fully ready for the kind of focus and determination an adult might have. But as others have said: if all else fails, you may need to talk to the parent about finding another instrument. Piano just isn't the right fit for everyone.


Offline dagny_taggart

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #22 on: February 28, 2015, 03:47:34 AM »
Who actually enjoys practicing? It is hard work... I have to force myself, too -- and I am a piano teacher of 32 students.

Offline nj61

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #23 on: March 02, 2015, 11:49:14 AM »
that ^ and I agree re: just ask for a bare minimum and leave the rest to him.  I have my 12 year old practice whilst I put my daughter to bed.  That takes 10-15 minutes.  If he wants to do more he will, but at this stage its enough to keep him going, and if your son is a beginner it will be enough for him too.  I would have been expected to practice about half an hour a day at this age, but I was a little further along.

I find I don't have to nag as much if we have a good routine going.  eg homework, dinner, piano, in h/w and dinner, and piano and bed, he can do what he likes.  Even if that's just computer games to an extent I find slightly yucky, he is his own person now and at least is doing something. He has recently tried to give up another activity which he has done for a long time, and has done well with.  I know he has gotten to a tricky point, where he will have to work a bit harder to continue to develop.  And he is 12.  I am afraid I have made this one compulsory for now, and he always seems really glad when he has achieved something new.

I hated piano at 14. I had had a boring classical teacher since I was about 5.  My mum took a risk and put me with a local music student who dropped the abrsm curriculum and gave me Bartok and stuff.  That inspired me to keep going, and I started searching out my own music and sight reading more.  Once your son has moved on a bit, it might be worth considering a different teacher to your own.  I hated my mother getting involved with my lessons/practice.  She was a much better pianist than me so, no matter how supportive she felt she was, it always felt like criticism to me at that age.  I think she was well intentioned, but it can be really hard to detach from your own child's progress.  Make sure you don't put your expectations onto him without noticing.

Offline outin

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #24 on: March 02, 2015, 04:48:15 PM »
Who actually enjoys practicing?

I do...as long as I like the pieces. I do get frustrated with the lack of results, but I don't really mind the work. If I did I would have quit already, because I have very little to show for all that work.

Offline therealfolkblues

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #25 on: March 03, 2015, 04:06:11 PM »
As others have said it is work, yep. Without work though, at a skill or craft, you will never wield the power that hard work and dedication generally reward you with.
I too manipulated my mum into letting me quit at that age, but thankfully i WAS forced to sit and practice 2 hrs a day for the 7 or so years prior. EVen though i never"practiced", even playing Hanon mindlessly ad nauseum accomplishes "something" and at the least provided a physical foundation.

One of the great gifts of anime and manga to the youth of today like "NAruto" is that it very clearly illustrates the direct correlation between hard work and results and everything in between.

Also lets not forget something equally important imo. THe hard work , dedication skill and cunning required of you , the parent/teacher/mentor etc needed to allow your child to be all they can.

And those saying 10 min a day is cool.... really  now..

Offline therealfolkblues

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #26 on: March 03, 2015, 04:08:06 PM »
Who actually enjoys practicing? It is hard work... I have to force myself, too -- and I am a piano teacher of 32 students.

a stunning statement.

Offline bronnestam

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #27 on: March 03, 2015, 04:51:51 PM »
Who actually enjoys practicing? It is hard work... I have to force myself, too -- and I am a piano teacher of 32 students.

I enjoy practicing.
Well, there are days when I don't, then I don't play. But most of the days I find practicing most joyful. I would not play the piano if I did not like it.

Sometimes when a teen says he/she wants/not wants something, be careful. They MIGHT mean exactly the opposite. As an example, my daughter (age 15) admitted to me the other day that when she says "leave me alone!" she actually often means the opposite ... it is an ambivalent period of life (to you who don't know this already, or perhaps have forgotten it  ;)  ) A young piano student who cries that he does not want to play the piano anymore, MAY want to say that he loves to play the piano more than anything else in the world, but he has another problem which he does not dare to address directly.

But ... there is also a chance that he means exactly what he says: that he wants to quit. Perhaps piano is not his cup of tea.

As a parent you have to be wise and find your child's "true heart's desire" and respect it. I am sure you will come to the right decision. 

Offline hardy_practice

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #28 on: March 04, 2015, 07:03:13 AM »
A young piano student who cries that he does not want to play the piano anymore, MAY want to say that he loves to play the piano more than anything else in the world, but he has another problem which he does not dare to address directly.
That's a really good point.  Teenagers do pick handy targets sometimes.  They know they have a problem but haven't quite articulated it to themselves let alone others.
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Offline francescabennett

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #29 on: March 25, 2015, 09:00:09 PM »
Could it be that no other boy he knows takes piano lessons, and he's concerned that it's a weird and "uncool" thing to do? I know I begged to quit (around age 12) because all of my friends were playing band instruments and taking in-school lessons and I wanted to be like them. I was teased for taking private lessons and accused of thinking I was better than everyone else! It was simply that we already had a piano in the house and my parents saw no point in renting an instrument when we already had one.

Piano is also a lonely instrument, when all of your friends are playing in the school band. Could you help your son to see all the possibilities open to a good piano player? He could play in a band or church or accompany singers or help accompany the school musical or community theater. Is there a way his teacher could arrange a duet partner for him? Could his teacher show him how to improvise or play from charts and help him develop skills for playing contemporary music with others?

Show him the potential for being the life of the party!

Offline green

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #30 on: April 06, 2015, 02:29:41 PM »
Quote
But the more I do it, the more I come round to thinking that practice is work, and you just have to be willing to put that work in. A kid might not want to learn a particular way, or a particular kind of repertoire, because it isn't fun and their own thing musically. But if they don't understand the idea of sitting down and doing a bit of work to achieve an end result, they'll STILL be unwilling to practise even when you tailor everything exactly to what they want and like. I'm not saying don't be fun and creative - it's important to, and I always make an effort to myself. It's just that it can be a red herring. It's important to distinguish between not liking the specific content, and not liking the idea of working at ANY content. When it's the latter problem, turning somersaults to please the student won't actually help.

Here here. This is dead on, I have a 10 year old girl who says to her mother that she hates piano and wants to stop. Yet in lesson I would never have known, I mean she never shows that she is not enjoying herself, it appears that she is, and that would most likely be because I give her every piece that she wants to play, lessons are tailored to her interests, and we have lots of fun playing around. But that's where it starts and ends. Mother and I are both at a loss as to what to do. She has perfect pitch and plays nicely, she worked very hard on a difficult version of 'Let it Go", and zilch before and after for everything else. I also have talked to the mother about the ipad and TV and how she is glued to them at every moment possible, she's grown up in an environment of distraction, or instant easy passive gratification, the piano requires work, which she even seems to resent for having to do, but why this angry nasty attitude that only appears to the mother behind my back? I almost think its a bit too late to do anything about, I have seen this before, she will stop, there is no where to go, would being more regimented and strict help? No. More lenient and fun? No. Have a talk to her about how she will thank us all in a few years. No. So the mother thinks its best just to keep it going in hopes that this is just a phase.

Offline bernadette60614

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #31 on: May 11, 2015, 06:29:31 PM »
Here's an update:

Our son, whose teacher is a wonder, has found a way to reignite his interest. Each week, she invites him to compose something so he can play it for her during the next lesson.  This motivates him to sit down at the keyboard, since he absolutely loves composing and seems to have a gift for it.  Once at the keyboard, he'll don't his composition piece and then to round out the practice session with work on assigned songs and technique.

Offline dogperson

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #32 on: May 11, 2015, 08:01:36 PM »
I have personal experience with a sibling who desperately wanted to quit taking piano, but was forced to continue in spite of many tearful practice sessions.  She eventually was allowed, after many painful years, to quit, and has never played, nor wanted to play, since.  She did learn to play an instrument in which she had personal interest--the guitar.  There was no longer a need to demand practice--she wanted to learn and so practiced!

You should know better than anyone what are your child's true feelings and the reason for the request.  If continuing is to just fulfill a parental dream, then allow him to quit and find a hobby of real interest to him personally.  If it is an interest, but just not an understanding of the work equals gratification formula, then continue.   



Offline yadeehoo

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #33 on: May 24, 2015, 01:03:12 PM »
Maybe he just doesn't like piano. If he did, he'd be playing all the time without anybody having to pressure him to.

Or

If practice means for him certain exercises he doesn't like to do, he just doesn't enjoy the process of "practice", or simply being told how to play piano and if he really does have talent it's being killed just right there. Maybe give him some time to experience for himself outside of the lessons context.

If your wife/girlfriend tell you it's over, it doesn't mean she doesn't like guys anymore, it's just not working with the current setup.

(I'm commenting in this thread as a self taught pianist & composer)
Horowitz - Danse Macabre / Carmen variatons
Chopin - Polonaise in A flat Major + Etudes
Liszt - Liebestraum #3
Beethoven - Moonlight 3rd movement

WORK IN PROGRESS

Offline taoxia1970

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #34 on: June 27, 2015, 03:34:53 AM »
I don't think practice should be rounded up as exactly by minutes, but rather, if he has something to work on, try to decide on what exactly he wants to work on, have one or two specific goals in mind, and once you accomplished that, practice is done.

Music is one of those things, that you either enjoy and want to work on a piece, or you just don't want to work on it at all. A lot of times I found having something specific in mind about the piece might help students to decide how much, and if they want to work on it.

In addition, if playing the piano just going to be some hobby he will likely to have, then go easy on practice schedule, most of the students if they don't consider to become a professional, or even consider to play as a hobby, they will eventually quit piano by high school, so if he is still playing from time to time, or going to lessons, at least he is exposed to music, which is always a good thing than not get exposed at all, thus, just relax, try not to turn it into a very negative experience, and he will eventually hate music.

Offline slane

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #35 on: June 30, 2015, 01:16:48 AM »
I've made a playlist of AMEB preliminary music that, in a few months, she [11yo daughter] should be able to play quite easily. She listens to that in the car. In effect we've created a big bucket of possible pieces for her to play, analogous to the way you choose a book at the library.
Now she does 20mins after slowly working up to it.

Gosh this thread has been going a long time! My daughter now does 25min a day, wihtout (much) complaint. I get her to practice in the mornings. She's just too tired after school.
And the "bucket" of music in the car has worked brilliantly. She's picked quite a few pieces, which, although they are genearlly harder than the ones in the method book, she works at in a very constructive way and makes good progress, because they are the pieces she chose.
The teacher is very happy with her progress. He says she seems "committed" and I guess she is. Or its more like, that's just something that she and I do every day.. practice.

Offline rachmaninoff_forever

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #36 on: June 30, 2015, 03:55:35 AM »
Let him quit
Live large, die large.  Leave a giant coffin.

Offline cuberdrift

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Offline picasso18

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #38 on: July 09, 2015, 04:18:12 PM »
You should just let him stop. If he doesn't like practicing, and you force him to practice, it certainly isn't going to make him like it! At the end of the day playing the piano is for fun, and unless he's going to become a concert pianist I think maybe you should get him a new hobby.

Offline falala

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #39 on: July 09, 2015, 10:15:23 PM »
Not read the thread then, guys?

Here's an update:

Our son, whose teacher is a wonder, has found a way to reignite his interest. Each week, she invites him to compose something so he can play it for her during the next lesson.  This motivates him to sit down at the keyboard, since he absolutely loves composing and seems to have a gift for it.  Once at the keyboard, he'll don't his composition piece and then to round out the practice session with work on assigned songs and technique.

Yeah, let him stop - just at the point where you've got it working and he's happy and motivated with it.  ::)

Offline picasso18

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #40 on: August 11, 2015, 07:24:39 PM »
Look ill be honest with you, when i was much younger (about 9 and 10) my mother kept forcing me to do these ridiculous lessons: soccer, basketball, piano, (at different times mind you) but i hated them all. yet she kept forcing me to do them and got ridiculously angry when i didnt excel at it as well as the children of the other mothers did. she was prideful and wanted me to be better than all of them. i however, couldnt care less and kept talking to this redhead named joe who kept goofing off with me while the angry teacher kept telling us to literally shut up every time. i resented my own mother for it for a long time. i hated these things because THEY JUST WERENT PART OF WHO I AM. we all have one life. just one. make sure that your kid enjoys his life rather than arbitrarily forcing him to do some random nonsense that he doesnt want to do. No you dont necessarily know better because youre the parent. if you did, youd realize that you're just pushing your crap onto someone else without their consent. end of story. give your kid a break.

Offline louispodesta

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #41 on: August 13, 2015, 11:05:07 PM »
Our son and I have been taking piano lessons with the same teacher for the last six months.  His teacher is a lovely person and he really likes her, enjoys going to the lessons and enjoys demonstrating to us what he has taught himself to play by ear.

But, he hates to practice.  He's asked to practice only 10 minutes a day (a far cry from the two hours a day I was required to practice at his age) and it is a struggle. We've tried rewards (extra Youtube viewing time, cash, a special excrusion) and others to no avail.

I finally told him that if he wanted to quit he had to go in and personally tell his teacher.

He's turning 13 this month and I suspect some of this is just being a new teen.  Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!
I am beginning to think that the rest of you are of the opinion that I am generating these posts:  just kidding.

So, in regards the OP, I will restate what I have said before, which has sufficiently embroiled me in controversy:

["For record, I finally got serious about learning my fine art craft when I was 20 and went to NTSU.  The reason it took so long is that along is that I was forced to take lessons as a child.   I cannot even remember the number of times I quit. . . .

But, the best thing that happened was when my late father, who practiced three to four hours every evening after supper, had this big argument with my mother:

She said:  "well, I want him to take piano lessons," and then he said:  " well, what does he want to do?"  She said:  "well, he wants to play baseball with his friends," whereupon my father said:  "well, that is what he is going to do."]

So, instead of spending my childhood tied to some piano bench, doing something that I absolutely hated, I got to live a normal life.

My recommendation to the OP:

1)  Please, please do not force this child, and I do not use the phrase "gifted child" because if drudgery sets in after ten minutes, they are not the problem, YOU ARE THE PROBLEM!

2)  Have them join their school choir, learn how sing a melody, and partake in a true musical experience.  The cost is practically nil, and they can do it for the rest of their lives.  If it is in them to play the piano, they will come to you and practically beg you to take lessons.

If your child has it in them to become a musician, of whatever instrument, then a choral experience will manifest that accordingly, later on.



 
 
 



Offline kevonthegreatpianist

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #42 on: September 02, 2015, 09:59:38 PM »
then let him quit. its his choice what he'd like to do in his teen years.
I made an account and hadn't used it in a year. Welcome back, kevon.

Offline anima55

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #43 on: September 03, 2015, 10:00:24 PM »
I would let your son quit if he doesn't enjoy practising because playing the piano IS piano practice.  If he doesn't enjoy it, he's never going to enjoy playing the piano to the full.  I would let him look for something he would enjoy more.

Offline dogperson

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #44 on: September 03, 2015, 10:05:56 PM »
[quote weauthor=bernadette60614 link=topic=56999.msg626603#msg626603 date=1431368971]
Here's an update:

Our son, whose teacher is a wonder, has found a way to reignite his interest. Each week, she invites him to compose something so he can play it for her during the next lesson.  This motivates him to sit down at the keyboard, since he absolutely loves composing and seems to have a gift for it.  Once at the keyboard, he'll don't his composition piece and then to round out the practice session with work on assigned songs and technique.
[/quote]

This is the OPs latest update -- all is well. 

Offline glennross

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #45 on: September 06, 2015, 08:33:33 PM »
Hi,

I myself have played the piano since I was 4. But that was not because my parents forced me to do it. It's simply because I was so intrigued by the sound of it and how to produce it.

Anyway, what I'm trying to say, is that you shouldn't force him to go to practice. This is certainly not going to make him like to do so.

Just, have a good talk with him about it (if you haven't already done so) and find out why he doesn't like to. You could also sit down with him and come up with some ideas to keep practicing (e.g. you will achieve to do so, one of the most wonderful things that exist), but if he really doesn't want to, don't force him. This will result in the umpteenth Japanese pianist who has marvelous technique but not a very bright musical mind. (I haven othing against Japanese people.)

BW,Glenn
"The finest instrument, is the mind."
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Offline dogperson

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #46 on: September 06, 2015, 08:42:30 PM »
Here's an update:

Our son, whose teacher is a wonder, has found a way to reignite his interest. Each week, she invites him to compose something so he can play it for her during the next lesson.  This motivates him to sit down at the keyboard, since he absolutely loves composing and seems to have a gift for it.  Once at the keyboard, he'll don't his composition piece and then to round out the practice session with work on assigned songs and technique.

 ;)


Offline louispodesta

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #47 on: September 07, 2015, 10:53:27 PM »
;)


No, all is not well!

Before someone got the bright idea to teach music theory in a college classroom, this is the way the whole world did it in the 18th, 19th, and early 20th centuries:

1)  Every single student, regardless of their instrument (including voice) had a primary teacher and then another teacher for theory/composition.  This is how every major composer learned their craft, with the exception of Joe Haydn, whose teacher in Vienna was incorrigible (Haydn taught himself).

2)  Just as rock and roll bands have done for the last 50 years (with a few notable exceptions), when a composer/pianist performed in concert, they were expected to give homage to Mozart and Beethoven.  And, then they were expected to play their own compositions.

3)  When Beethoven auditioned for Mozart, he started off with the very popular C Minor Concerto.  Mozart abruptly stopped Beethoven and then requested that the student play some of his own compositions.

4)  The OP's simplistic attempt to continue what is obviously a flawed dynamic (remember, I am also a philosopher) by attempting to insert a new causality, will not change the eventual result.

5)  As evidenced today, there are hundreds if not thousands of piano teachers, who bribe their students to practice with gift cards.  When I was young, we got a pasted on gold star on our piece, if we had learned it properly from the last lesson.

6)  Per the Op, let your, soon to be adolescent son, spread his wings.  That means:  you get him a composition teacher, and an acoustic guitar.  The piano lesson, along with an acoustic stringed instrument, will allow him to compose anything he wants to.

After that, you will just see what he has musically inside of him.  That, of course, is your true goal, is it not???

7)  That means, as a philosopher, I am well aware of male patriarchal dominance, and that is what is going on here!

Offline dcstudio

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #48 on: September 07, 2015, 11:01:26 PM »
This is the OPs latest update -- all is well. 

glad to hear it!  ;D

Offline dogperson

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Re: Our son wants to quit piano, what should I do?
«Reply #49 on: September 08, 2015, 12:36:19 PM »
glad to hear it!  ;D


It's a good thing learning music and motivation is not a 'one size fits all'.  I would have gagged if I were forced to have studied guitar--- but piano, cello, AH!!  .. and yes, I was more 'than 'exposed'
Each one of us is different.